#18 Colostrum vs Transfer Factor: What’s Wiser?

Have you sought to strengthen your animal’s immune system and been told colostrum is an amazing natural way to do that? How it’s specially made to help calves survive in the germ filled world they are born into, and so, it’s good for you and your animals?

I’ve long been impressed with a component of colostrum called transfer factor. It’s been well studied for over 60 years with thousands of research papers published on it world wide. I chose to use it in myself and my patients based largely on all that research and the results have often been quite remarkable in both me and the animals who’ve gotten it.

In this episode, I’ve clarified the differences between colostrum and one of its key immune components, transfer factor. The two are significantly different in who they can help. Knowing the difference will help you do better for your animals (and yourself) and save you money when you make an informed choice between these two seemingly similar products.

Inside, you’ll discover:

— what’s in colostrum that makes it so amazing

— who exactly benefits most from it (and how those who do can die without it)

— how a critical time factor makes all the difference between the two

— how the size of colostrum’s main ingredient limits its usefulness

If you’ve ever wondered if colostrum and transfer factor are interchangeable, you won’t want to miss this episode.

Your comments are welcome below. Did you learn something from this episode?

Links for this episode

Concentrated transfer factor + medicinal mushrooms in our sister company’s flagship product:

This one powerful supplement treats both dogs and cats now.

More on titers, mentioned in this episode:
Dr. Robb on titers and immune certificates, Episode 4

Titers: Are you using them wisely? Episode 16

Thanks for listening!

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  1. Lorene Lindstrom on January 14, 2024 at 1:13 pm

    What did I learn … A stimulated immune system is a balance one. This tells me that regular, small exposures are necessary to keep the immune system balanced, whether it’s through natural exposure or using transfer factors. (Or both.) I also would like to speculate as to the reason why so many seem to see results – especially in allergies – with colostrum. I’m wondering if those results are because the animal is also experiencing leaky gut, which in turn allows the larger colostrum molecules to move through the gut (as in the newborn) and therefore gives some benefit. Those without leaky gut probably won’t get the same benefit and transfer factors would be a better option.

    • Will Falconer, DVM on January 18, 2024 at 10:56 pm

      I believe the colostrum has some local benefits in the gut. Your idea probably also makes sense, if the leaky gut allows more through than normal healthy guts. The key difference in my mind: 80:1 concentrated TF in the products vs colostrum. So, if immune support is what you seek, it just makes much more sense to use the active fraction of colostrum than the whole “soup.”

  2. rain on January 18, 2021 at 11:09 am

    hi will, my 8.5 year old golden (intact, lyme positive, anemic) girl was just diagnosed with kidney disease ( stage2) probably from the lyme disease. Would your canine immune complex help her ? i was just trying to understand the difference in your canine immune complex VS Transfer Factors Plus for humans, not sure what would be best to help her. love your podcasts – you are amazing, never stop doing all that you do for us and our pets !

    • Will Falconer, DVM on January 18, 2021 at 10:22 pm

      Hi Rain,

      If there’s room for immune support, yes, our Motherboard will do it better than TF Plus, by an estimated 40% improvement. But, I’d also urge you to hire a qualified homeopathic vet to do the deeper work of constitutional prescribing. I have a video on how to best choose one on my Recommended Resources page — just scroll down to the AVH list and watch the video there.

      So glad you’re loving the podcast. I’ll keep at it.

  3. Paula V on January 3, 2021 at 7:23 am

    Would this be helpful for a naturally raised but chronically itchy dog?

    • Will Falconer, DVM on January 4, 2021 at 12:41 am

      Hi Paula, it sure could be. Allergic itch (the commonest kind) indicates a misfiring immune system, over reacting to things it should parse as normal. We’ve had reports of significantly less itchy dogs after the Canine Immune Complete [new name: Motherboard] or its predecessor, the 4Life canine product that abruptly left the marketplace.

  4. Pat Porter on December 29, 2020 at 4:37 pm

    Dr Falconer, thaks for sharing your knowledge. Yes, this info clarified a foggy area in my brain. Much appreciation, Pat Porter

  5. Ardella Crawford on December 29, 2020 at 10:25 am

    Thanks for this–very informative. Someone recently recommended colostrum for our cat colony we’re caring for (some have chronic sniffles that lysine doesn’t help, so I don’t think it’s feline herpes), so I got some, and the sickest animals drank it eagerly. But I think it gave them diarrhea, so I figured it wouldn’t work. I think I’ll try TF for them, and thanks for the recommendation on where to order it.

    • Will Falconer, DVM on December 29, 2020 at 11:28 pm

      You bring up a really good point, Ardella. Those same large proteins, if absorbed via a leaky gut, can provoke allergic reactions, diarrhea among them. The tiny TF is not an allergen and has helped many an allergic animal quell their allergies.

  6. Ann Walk on December 29, 2020 at 8:08 am

    Dr. Will, thank you thank you for this so very informative podcast. I have two jars of Colostrum waiting to be used. My dog loves the taste right out of my hand so I will continue to give it to her until these jars are used up and I won’t order any more. Thank you for saving me so much money.

    • Will Falconer, DVM on December 29, 2020 at 10:10 am

      Sure thing, Ann. Won’t hurt anything to feed out what you have, certainly.

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